By Brandon Fischer, Global Peace & Security Issue Analyst

As beneficiaries of the American system of government, the chance periodically arises for us to forge our voices into its framework during election season. On November 2, 2010, residents who are of 18 years or above will be granted this opportunity. Through this act, American youth will be able to imprint their mark upon the political climate which will affect them and their families for decades to come.

Muslim-American youth, in particular, have much to benefit from contributing in this way. Many sources have found the Muslim-American culture to produce some of the most ambitious and engaged youth in the country. Muslim youth should take hold of the knowledge, access to resources and networks that they possess and put it to use during a process of enormous impact.

The importance of this event becomes evident when considering how critical November’s election period is for the informed voter. Local, state and federal offices will be up for new blood, allowing for an overhaul of policy perspective. By engaging in this act of voting, it provides each the ability to suggest office holders who will represent their unique concerns and desires.

With the rising protectionist and conservative rhetoric that is observed in public and private circles, there exists a huge need for this type of civic engagement in order to provide a bold counternarrative. Apart from voting for office holders who will counter stereotypes and misperceptions of Muslimhood, this voting should also carry the intention of producing a nation that reflects the self-determination of each of its citizens, Muslim and non-Muslim, etc.

Additionally, several reporters have indicated the steep consequences that will become of the results of November’s election, given the state of Congressional seating. With Tea Partiers gaining some footing and Conservatives facing the prospect of taking over Congress, all party members, Democratic, Republican or otherwise, should be conscious of these divisions and their ability to hugely affect the efficiency of our government.

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